Where is the best place to say “I love you”? Where should you choose to propose to your lover? Where can you make love in peace? Of course the choice remains personal and fundamentally subjective. Whether you’re an urbanite, a leisure enthusiast or a crazy hiker, romance doesn’t necessarily express itself in the same way. In the following, we will introduce some 20 top romantic destinations which could be a great choice for lovers.
Romantic Destinations in Africa, Asia and Oceania
Sure, when it comes to romance, it’s hard to beat the Taj Mahal, which is one of the greatest proofs of love in history. However, there are many other places in Africa, Asia and Oceania where you will find places where you can declare your love!
20. Essaouira – Morocco
Essaouira is one of the most fascinating cities in Morocco. Its white medina, surrounded by fortifications on the Atlantic coast, is a Unesco World Heritage Site. From Orson Welles to Jimi Hendrix, Essaouira has always drawn artists from all over the world to experience the magical atmosphere of the old Mogador. A timeless city of intense charm.
You can sleep in one of the riads of the medina for an atmosphere reminiscent of a thousand and one nights or, better yet, in a hotel directly facing the Atlantic.
Taj Mahal was built between 1631 and 1653 at the request of the Mughal Shah Jahan for… love. Legend has it that the emperor, in the midst of his grief, decided to build a monument in the image of his late wife Mumtaj Mahal. To commemorate this irreplaceable “chosen one of the harem”, the monument was to be unlike any other.
Thus, the Taj, a masterpiece of Mughal architecture, paradoxically became the icon of the cradle of Hinduism. Verses from the Koran and floral designs in precious stones are inlaid in the diaphanous marble. The Taj Mahal, huge but ethereal, shines on a garden symbolizing the Muslims’ paradise.
Table Mountain stands brutally high above Cape Town at 1,000 meters. It is possible to climb to its completely flat summit by cable car. From the top, many hikes are possible, among hundreds of plant species. It is a unique place in the world, at the end of the African continent.
Feel free to venture out on the trails, because the crowds don’t usually go far from the cable car. But be careful, wear good walking shoes. Signal Hill and Lion’s Head, the two other hills overlooking Cape Town, also offer nice views.
Imagine a dream of stone, a vanished city invaded by the jungle, a treasure of universal heritage… Who has never dreamed of seeing the mountain temples of Angkor Wat blaze in the sunset? Angkor’s charm, Khmer capital from the 9th to the 14th century, stems from the still unresolved mystery of its civilization and its proximity to nature. Imagine being petrified of the gigantic roots of the banyan trees surrounding the ruins.
You should plan at least three days of visit, because Angkor’s site is gigantic and covers 400 square kilometers. A lot of people visit the most famous sites – Angkor Wat or the Bayon – but one is often (almost) alone in the more remote temples of the Grand Circuit. Our favorite: Banteay Srei, the “citadel of women”, with its perfectly sculpted reliefs in pink sandstone.
The fascination of Along Bay is irresistible. One of Asia’s most famous landscapes, the bay has about two thousand sugar loaves of all shapes and sizes rising from the sea and stretching for hundreds of kilometers. The scenery is constantly changing, the atmosphere is strange with the jagged shapes of the rocks, the caves, cavities and tunnels that pierce them.
In 1993, the place was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, under the criterion of “natural beauty”. To enjoy the mysterious atmosphere of the place, board a junk hotel and spend the night in the bay.
And to finish, Eden or almost… Bora Bora is the very image of the paradise island, the perfect example of a sunny place of retreat where the white sand beaches stretch for miles. It is made up of an extinct volcano, surrounded by a fringe of reef, protecting it like a barrier, and a lagoon with shimmering colors.
An added bonus for diving fans: the underwater fauna is amazing. Moreover, what could be more romantic than sleeping in a Polynesian faré or a hotel on stilts?
Romantic Destinations in Americas
North or South America, cities or wide open spaces, there are just as many different places as there are different romances. The choice of destination is yours to make according to your tastes, so stay tuned for more romantic destinations.
The Cidade Maravilhosa is packed with romantic sites, from the Sugar Loaf to the Christ of Corcovado and the inevitable Copacabana. To escape the clichés, it is on the point of Arpoador, between Copacabana and Ipanema, that one must make love. The view from there is magnificent on the beach of Ipanema and its surfers, symbol of the carioca dolce vita.
After your visit, you can have a drink in one of the local cafes like the Garota de Ipanema, where Tom Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes wrote the famous song of the same name.
Located in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, the Magdalen Islands are a sort of end of the world in Quebec. You will feel an impression of infinity in the peace and quiet of this archipelago (especially during the off-season) with its dunes, green meadows, fine sand beaches and red cliffs. You will find serenity and succulent lobster dinners at affordable prices.
We strongly advise you to sleep in Havre-Aubert, the oldest village of the islands founded in 1793. A crazy charm!
For the most adventurous romantics and vice versa. This is one of the most amazing places on the planet: situated at an altitude of 3,650 meters, the Salar of Uyuni is an enormous salt desert, the largest in the world. With a thickness of 40 meters, layers of salt and clay alternate: the place is of a staggering whiteness with an infinite horizon, of a perfect flatness. Above, there are some small islands with cactus of 10 to 12 meters high.
Be aware that it is cold at night and in winter (up to -25°C) and you can only go there in the company of a guide-driver. You have been warned!
Honey, take me to the end of the world… Well, it’s here, “El fin del mundo”, Ushuaia. Located at the tip of the Andes Mountains and the continent, Ushuaia is the entrance to Antarctica and the South Pole. With its unique location, which allows the Andes to plunge into the sea, Ushuaia, although not strictly speaking a beautiful city, is among the most charming places in the world.
In order to impress your lover even more, you can take a boat for an unforgettable cruise on the Beagle Channel or to the Lighthouse of the Pathfinders, which is mistaken here for the lighthouse at the end of the world (it is in fact located on the east side of Tierra del Fuego). On your way, the majestic tail of the Andes cordillera spreads out under your eyes. Be careful, cover yourself, the wind is icy.
Without a doubt, the most beautiful view of Manhattan, in particular at sunset. However, crossing the bridge by the pedestrian bridge above the cars is quite noisy.
The best place to go is the Fulton Ferry Landing Pier, at the base of the bridge, which you can reach by getting off at the High St. subway station. From this point, you’ll have a wonderful view of Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge. The more fortunate can declare their love at the River Cafe, while the others can enjoy an ice cream at the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory next door.
Romantic Destinations in Europe
Frequently referred to as the romantic city par excellence, Paris is not the only place in France, or in Europe, filled with romance. In fact, it’s quite the opposite! There are many other romantic destinations in Europe which we will introduce in the following.
The Serpentine, an artificial lake created in 1730 that divides Hyde Park and Kensington Garden, is an oasis of serenity in the heart of London. The best part of the trip is the canoe ride on the placid waters of the Serpentine.
Later, wander through the beautiful neighborhoods of Chelsea and South Kensington to see the wonderful Georgian and Victorian houses and shop in the numerous chic boutiques in the area or at the legendary Harrod’s.
The Pont des Arts is one of the symbols of romantic Paris. The footbridge of the Pont des Arts, which was the first iron bridge in Paris, links the two banks of the Seine, from the Institut de France to the Louvre. From the current footbridge, which was installed in 1984, you can enjoy a magnificent 360° view of the heart of Paris, from the Ile Saint-Louis to the Eiffel Tower.
Nearby, at the western end of the island Saint-Louis, there is another place that will make you fall in love with it: the Square du Vert-Galant, at river level. Wonderful sunsets in summer and a picnic is highly recommended, if possible with champagne!
It would be difficult to select a specific place in the Eternal City. Situated at the edge of the Villa Borghese, and accessible via a staircase from the Piazza del Popolo, the Pincio Gardens overlook all of Rome. It has an intimate atmosphere and is a beautiful sight, particularly during sunset, when you can see the domes of Rome lit up by the light of sunset.
There are many possibilities for lovers afterwards, like having an aperitif at the chic Antico Caffè Greco (via dei Condotti, a stone’s throw from Piazza di Spagna) where Goethe, Stendhal, Wagner or Sophia Loren sat, or a romantic dinner in a trattoria in Trastevere.
The Hermitage, the canals, the palaces full of history, the memory of the tsars and the Orthodox churches… St. Petersburg has everything to be a dream setting, which will stimulate the romantic spirits. We recommend the Strelka (“The Needle”) at the eastern tip of Vasilievsky Island, where you can enjoy a magnificent view of the Winter Palace and the spire of St. Peter and Paul Cathedral.
To go on in style, have a romantic dinner in one of the boat-restaurants on the Neva (Aquarel, at the foot of the Birjevoï bridge) or, if you are feeling crazy, go to the Caviar Bar of the Grand Hotel Europe to taste those valuable black pearls to the sound of gypsy violins, with stars in your eyes.
The pinnacle of Gaelic romanticism, this is one of the most beautiful places in Ireland. A guaranteed love at first sight! The Dingle Peninsula stretches out into the Atlantic as a chain of barren mountains and rocky, moor-covered hills that tumble towards the sea.
Numerous hiking trails cross the peninsula and allow hikers to discover small high altitude lakes. This is where the famous movies Ryan’s Daughter and Distant Horizons were shot.
The Slea Head Drive at the end of the peninsula is very popular, with its menhirs, ruins, sheep and beautiful viewpoints.
This is one of the most beautiful fjords in Norway. Something to make your heart beat faster! The Geiranger Fjord is a truly unforgettable place. If you come from the south, you will be overwhelmed by the spectacle. A breathtaking descent makes you fall from 1,000 meters to 0 meters in less than 10 kilometers! The Geiranger Fjord is one of the most famous scenic spots in Norway. The place is a Unesco World Heritage Site.
You can take the ferry or a boat excursion to Hellesylt: the fjord is bordered by a gigantic rock face from which waterfalls flow down. The trip takes between 1 and 1.5 hours, but it feels like a lifetime. Sublime.
Nearly a romantic cliché! All is perfect. Santorini has one of the most extraordinary landscapes: this island is formed by the crater of a volcano buried under water. Santorini offers the image of a long cliff with a sheer drop of 80 to 120 meters high, where layers of black or red ashes are superimposed, with a white village perched on top. It is magnificent!
We suggest you to sleep in a troglodytic hotel on the cliff side, in the most beautiful village of the island, Oia. Breathtaking view on the caldera, sublime even at night. Be careful, don’t go there in the high season: in summer, the island is crowded and prices soar.
In case you want to know more about Santorini, previously we have written a thorough travel guide for Santorini which you can read.
For mountain lovers, this is one of the most impressive viewpoints on the Mont Blanc. The view from the Bellachat hut, at 2,152 meters, on the other side of the Chamonix valley, is stunning, especially at sunset (in good weather of course). The refuge is located below Mont Brévent and is only accessible by cable car and a short walk for the less brave. The most motivated (love makes you grow wings sometimes) can go up on foot.
The must is to spend the night there in order to be able to admire the show comfortably installed on the panoramic terrace.
Tip: the facilities (washbasins, toilets) are rather basic. But when you love, you don’t stop at this kind of detail…
San Giorgio Maggiore’s advantage is its location, directly in front of the Doge’s Palace. The panorama on the Serenissima is sufficient to melt the most hardened hearts. Another plus: San Giorgio Maggiore is definitely less crowded than San Marco. This island was used as a checkpoint for the flow of sea traffic at the height of the Venetian republic. It is possible to visit the beautiful chiesa San Giorgio Maggiore, one of Palladio’s masterpieces.
Be sure to climb the Campanile of San Giorgio Maggiore, considerably less crowded than the one in St. Mark’s Square. Ideal for lovers.